TRIAL COURT COMPLETES ROLLOUT OF MASSCOURTS LITE;
Electronic Criminal Case Management System Enhances Public Safety
Chief Justice for Administration and Management Robert A. Mulligan today
announced that the Trial Court has completed its rollout of MassCOURTS Lite to 63 divisions of the District and Boston Municipal Court Departments. MassCOURTS is the Trial Court’s web-based, electronic case management system. MassCOURTS Lite is the core of the system’s criminal case management component, which improves public safety through better information sharing and identity of defendants in criminal cases and provides many cost efficiencies in court operations.
The rollout was accomplished in approximately one year with the support and assistance of hundreds of Trial Court employees across the Commonwealth who attended to their regular case management responsibilities as they were adapting to the new system.
Chief Justice Mulligan said, “I am very proud of the effort and hard work of those employees in the trenches and their enthusiastic participation in the training in order to make the rollout a success. Most remarkable is their willingness to embrace cultural change and to modify entrenched business practices to improve management through automation. Through the capable leadership of Chief Information Officer Craig Burlingame and Judge Jim McHugh, who has devoted countless hours to this project as my special adviser, the Trial Court has made substantial progress in the rollout of MassCOURTS.”
the past year, an average of one court division per week was
added to the MassCOURTS Lite system. The system contains more
than 2.4 million criminal cases, 129,000 of which have been added
since the rollout began. More than 5.5 million identities of
defendants, including their aliases, are in the system. Approximately
550 Trial Court employees use MassCOURTS Lite to perform nearly
20,000 transactions daily.
important public safety feature of MassCOURTS Lite is the integration
of State Police data which provides better identity management
in criminal cases. Each night, the MassCOURTS Lite system automatically
obtains State Identification (SID) numbers assigned by the State
Police to individuals who have been arrested and fingerprinted.
Each time it successfully matches a SID number with MassCOURTS
data, MassCOURTS automatically adds the SID number to the system's
identity information, greatly enhancing the reliability and the
accuracy of information Trial Court employees can use in future
cases. Hundreds of Trial Court employees from the clerks' and
probation offices are collaborating in a fundamentally new way
to enhance defendant tracking.
A.Wayne Sampson, retired Executive Director of the Massachusetts
Chiefs of Police Association said, "The Trial Court has
been in regular communication with the association and with our
individual members to insure a smooth transition to the new system,
and to implement never before used standards for criminal identity
management within the Trial Court. We appreciate the collaborative
way this initiative has been approached and look forward to the
continued public safety benefits this new application represents."
Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis said, "The Boston Police
Department applauds the efforts of the Trial Court to incorporate
biometric support to identity data in criminal cases within MassCOURTS... We
look forward to working with the courts as these efforts continue
and welcome the resulting improvements to the entire criminal justice
new system eliminates the labor and cost of mailing thousands
of printed notices by electronically delivering information about
appointment of counsel in criminal cases to the Committee for
Public Counsel Services (CPCS).
Chief Counsel William J. Leahy said, "The breakthrough that has been accomplished
this year is impressive, and we applaud the MassCOURTS team for
cost saving features of MassCourts Lite include the creation
of centralized forms which are automatically filled in with case
information and instantly delivered over the computerized network
to printers in the location where the form is needed.
Court Chief Justice Lynda M. Connolly and Boston Municipal
Court Chief Justice Charles R. Johnson said that MassCOURTS Lite
helps them to achieve goals derived from the recommendations
of the Monan Report that are aimed at reducing the time litigation
takes and the public and private cost litigation entails.
Justice Connolly said, "The MassCOURTS Lite application
allows managers to 'drill down' into the data to
identify potential improvements in both case flow and case processing.
For the first time we have access to important information to
help us fashion streamlined procedures to close out cases or
to schedule next events."
Justice Johnson said, "The
new web-based case management system enables information sharing
throughout the Trial Court and its constituent agencies, and
improves information flow within the court system itself."
the same time that MassCOURTS Lite was being rolled out
in the District and Boston Municipal Court Departments, the
electronic document imaging component of the MassCOURTS
system was being installed in the Probate and Family Court where
it is now in use in every division. Today those courts
have electronic images of more than 113,000 cases and 912,000
electronic documents. Approximately 5,000 new documents
are added daily. The imaging system allows instant access to
documents, even if they are physically stored in remote
2005, the Land Court Department was the first Trial Court department
to "go live" with the full web-based
MassCOURTS system. The rollout of full MassCOURTS is now moving
forward with the other Trial Court Departments and is expected
to be completed next year.